Man says he was violently attacked while protecting women on Congress Avenue bridge

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AUSTIN (KXAN) — A 59-year-old man said he was hospitalized last Monday after a man attacked him for intervening in an assault on several women.

Mark Dolan, who lives in Austin, told police he was jogging on the Congress Avenue bridge when he heard several women screaming. Dolan said he turned to see a man randomly hit one of the women.

Cynthia Wagner, who lives in Georgia, was one of those women. She and her three girlfriends, who all live out-of-state, were reuniting in Austin over the weekend. She broke down the attack to KXAN over the phone.

Ashley (bottom right) was visiting Austin over the weekend when she was randomly attacked on the Congress Ave. Bridge. (Courtesy: Cynthia Wagner)

“He just walked straight into our group and started punching my friend Ashley,” Wagner said. “We were all screaming and trying to push the guy off of her, and Mark just started screaming at us, ‘run, run!'”

“She was up against the rail and she just screamed, and so that’s when I ran back,” Dolan said. “I told her to run to the Line Hotel and then I started walking back to the hotel, not realizing he was following me.”

Dolan said his assailant, Timothy Mitchell, began violently attacking him just outside the hotel restaurant. Dolan said he attempted to fight the man off, but struggled to regain his balance.

timothy-mitchell
Timothy Mitchell (Austin Police Department Photo)

“I just started kicking the guy as best as I could,” Dolan told KXAN News. “He wouldn’t back off. He was just a raging maniac.”

“The guy just came barreling in and he really just started beating on Mark. It was horrible,” Wagner said.

Dolan said he received seven stitches on different parts of his head and suffered from severe bruising on his ear and face. Wagner said Ashley, the female victim of the attack, is suffering from minor shock from the trauma.

Dolan received several stitches on his face following the attack. (Courtesy: Mark Dolan)

Video from the scene shows Mitchell was pinned down by multiple people and arrested on the spot.

According to Travis County Sheriff Inmate records, Mitchell was booked on Monday afternoon and faces five charges: two counts of assault causing bodily injury, possession of drug paraphernalia, public intoxication and a city ordinance violation.

As of Monday night, Mitchell is still in custody at the Travis County jail. He is scheduled to face a judge Tuesday morning.

Dolan is currently working with the victim’s coordinator at the Travis County DA’s office. But he said it’s up to city leaders to make public safety their top priority.

“Violent offenders, we have got to get off the street. And our leaders need to deal with it in whatever fashion they feel is right,” Dolan said.

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